VirTra, a global provider of training simulators for the law enforcement, military, educational, and commercial markets, has partnered with the Force Science Institute to create realistic training and education for law enforcement officers, which is backed by the science of human performance. The formal partnership builds on the two companies’ relationship, which was initially established in April 2018, when they jointly developed a four-part series of law enforcement training courses.

“By partnering with Force Science Institute, we’re able to leverage their research, training, and complex scientific principles to add extensive depth and expertise to our leading simulation product line,” said Jason Mulcahy, VirTra GM. “We’re empowering every line-level officer on the streets with the critical knowledge and practical skills to help keep the communities they serve safe and return home unharmed.”

Dr. Bill Lewinski, executive director and co-founder of the Force Science Institute, has been identifying the human dynamics involved in complex, high-stress, and often life-threatening encounters for over 40 years. By leveraging Force Science’s experience, VirTra furthers its mission to make officers safer through realistic, highly effective, and scientifically grounded education and simulator technologies. Together, the partners have propelled police trainers to reimagine what is possible with advanced performance and simulation training, VirTra said.

Lewinski said, “Partnering with VirTra, with their advanced training simulators, will allow us to apply human factors research in a way that effectively combines physical, cognitive, and perceptual training and testing. This combination will be vital to developing and maintaining the knowledge, judgment, and skills transfer our law enforcement needs.”

The VirTra and Force Science partnership is already offering benefits for law enforcement, according to VirTra:

* VirTra and the Force Science Institute created scholarships for 12 peace officers to attend a five-day Force Science Certification Course. The scholarship award covers the course fee ($1,650). Applications for this scholarship are still being accepted. Those interested can still apply here or nominate an applicant by 11:59 p.m. CDT on Sunday, August 25, 2019.

* Co-sponsored training in "Foundational Principals of Force Science" was developed for the Miami-Dade Police Department, the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s, and the O’Fallon Police Department, and features demonstrations of VirTra simulator training scenarios.

* A joint presentation at the FBI National Academy Associates’ National Conference was conducted by VirTra Director of Training Lon Bartel and Senior Instructor for Force Science Institute Chris Butler. During the presentation, titled "How to Mitigate/Prevent 'Lawful but Awful' Use-of-Force Events," they discussed training tactics, the science of simulation, and how to mitigate risks to law enforcement and the community.

Through the new partnership, VirTra and Force Science Institute will continue to identify important research projects, develop science-backed training scenarios, and offer valuable education in the upcoming seasons, VirTra said.

The Second Annual Force Science Conference is being held in Chicago Oct. 16-17, 2019. Attendees can meet VirTra and Force Science instructors and witness a demonstration of the VirTra simulator.